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4000 Years of Bloodshed - Systematic killing of member of the same species - we are indeed unique.

Reader comment on item: Islamist Turkey vs. Secular Iran?

Submitted by Michel C. Zala (Switzerland), Jan 3, 2011 at 11:15

God is my witness, I deplore the Turkish genozides on Greeks, Assyrians and Armenians and the many Hungarians (my father came from there) killed during the expansion of the Ottoman empire. I feel for those victims of Imperialism, as I feel for the Jews, the Krim Tatars, the People of Darfur or the Tibetans at present.

How far shall we go back in history to justify our horror and indignation? As a young nation, comprised of the people of the world, borne out of repression and endowed with our unalienable rights and freedoms, we Americans in many ways are a result of such repression and atrocities. We are the children of all the oppressed, we are the huddled masses America invites on the statue of liberty in New York, greeting all the displaced, refugees and fugitves of the world. It would be easy for us to point at the carnage of the old world, omitting the fact that our own forefathers came from exactly those places.

DnM, we A R E Turks, Italians, Germans, Swiss, Spanish,Chinese, Africans, Irish, Brits, Russians. Their history is our own. Our own strong Spanish heritage is founded upon the purest form of imperialism, exercised by the Conquistadors. Until the late 18 hundreds, we engaged in slave trading and until the mid 19hundreds our own blacks were subject to segregation and discrimination. While America has a wonderful track record of promoting Freedom, Democracy and Liberty throughout the world, it nevertheless must face some introspection as well with its share of dark periods of misery during its short history of existence.

America is exceptional. Since its inception a force for good in the world. I am a proud patriot standing tall in the light of its accomplishments. But I also see a moral mandate to be gracious in victory and considerate of our own history and roots.

To stay on topic, I do not see the need to hammer the Turks again and again on their dark periods, while utterly neglecting that such atrocities occured and occur almost everywhere else too, but to lift them up in the true tradition of America, promoting separation of church and state, democracy, freedom and liberty, while standing firm and strong against any movement towards totalitarism, may it be political, religious or both combined. Constructive politics would be to strengthen our ties with an already large demo in Turkey proper and abroad, who do wish to live free and prosperous instead of pushing them too into the welcoming arms of an increasingly fundamentalistic muslim block within Turkey and abroad, seems to me much more warranted than continuously harping on atrocities committed 100 years ago.


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